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"America has two great dominant strands of political thought - conservatism, which, at its very best, draws lines that should not be crossed; and progressivism, which, at its very best, breaks down barriers that should never have been erected." -- Bill Clinton, Dedication of the Clinton Presidential Library, November 2004

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Monday, March 17, 2003


Dean Too Far Left?

posted by Scott at Monday, March 17, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
That's the question being asked at in an article titled, "Democrats seek another Clinton." Citing his support of civil unions and universal health insurance, Tom Curry posits that Dean "might not be able to win the general election." The biggest figure lending weight to this theory of late is Garry South, Gray Davis's reelection advisor.

It appears to be a legitimate concern from a party heavyweight until one looks a bit closer. South is on record as having the goal of "beating the bejesus out of George W. Bush" in 2004. He's also on record as subscribing to the theory that "antiwar" always translates to "soft on national defense" in the minds of everyday voters. (Many would argue that's changed greatly in light of the recent foreign policy moves of George W. Bush.)

While Garry South has made his intention clear to work for the Democratic presidential nominee in 2004, he's also made it clear that he hopes to help choose who that nominee is. The smart money says he's leaning towards Davis friend Kerry. One gets the impression though, that Clark, Graham, Edwards, Lieberman, or Gephardt would do. Hopefully, Dean will be able to outrun the "weak dove" meme and win over (or silence) powerbrokers like South in the process.


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About Nation-Building

Nation-Building was founded by Aziz Poonawalla in August 2002 under the name Dean Nation. Dean Nation was the very first weblog devoted to a presidential candidate, Howard Dean, and became the vanguard of the Dean netroot phenomenon, raising over $40,000 for the Dean campaign, pioneering the use of Meetup, and enjoying the attention of the campaign itself, with Joe Trippi a regular reader (and sometime commentor). Howard Dean himself even left a comment once. Dean Nation was a group weblog effort and counts among its alumni many of the progressive blogsphere's leading talent including Jerome Armstrong, Matthew Yglesias, and Ezra Klein. After the election in 2004, the blog refocused onto the theme of "purple politics", formally changing its name to Nation-Building in June 2006. The primary focus of the blog is on articulating purple-state policy at home and pragmatic liberal interventionism abroad.